Daily homily for Friday of the 30th week in Ordinary Time Cycle I
Theme: LOVE: ULTIMATE LAW
By: Fr. Gerald M. Musa
Laws protect us from the temptation of living irresponsible lives and help to bring order. Religious laws are compass that gives a sense of direction to people. The Old Testament says, “The law of the Lord is perfect, reviving the soul; the testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple” (Psalm 19:7). The New Testament states clearly that the “Law is holy, and the commandment is holy and righteous and good” (Romans 7:12). Over time people abused laws by exaggerating letters of the law and undermining the purpose and spirit of the law. Jesus challenged those who placed law above love and liberated religion from the tyranny of hypocrisy, legalism and ritualism. A sick man came to Jesus for healing. He was suffering from dropsy/Edema (swelling of the organ due to excessive fluid). The Pharisees did not want Jesus to heal the man because it was Sabbath Day. Jesus explained that the sabbath is not meant to enslave but to liberate people from physical and spiritual disability. In other words, we cannot abandon the sick, the poor, the oppressed and the suffering in the name of keeping laws. The spirit and purpose of the law is to love God above all things and to love others like oneself. Therefore, the ultimate law is the law of love. How often do we also pursue the shadows of the law, forgetting the purpose and deeper meaning of the law?
Romans 9:1-5; Luke 14:1-6; 30th Week of the Year 1